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Jules Bishop (Member and Artist of Watlington Climate Action Group) demonstrates in a workshop how to make paint from naturally extracted hedgerow-based pigments © Andrew Bailey

Artist and WCAG member, Jules Bishop, and a team of facilitators and researchers from the University are researching Watlington’s hedgerow inks and pigments

There are three strands to the research project:

1. Science education (science of pigment) and community art creation

2. Creating stable consistent pigment using science expertise

3. Generating industry interest in the paint on a commercial level

Free workshops on Making Inks, Pigments & Paints took place, using hedge material from West Meadow which was felled as part of the local habitat regeneration project.

Using ‘waste’ material from the hedges in our parish is one of the project’s key elements.

Feedback from the workshops was overwhelmingly positive and indicated that participants valued the opportunity to learn about pigments and hedgerows. They also valued exercising their creativity alongside other community members.


Who are Watlington Climate Action?
by Nicola Schafer, Chair

Watlington Climate Action Group was set up in 2019 to support Watlington to reduce the carbon footprint in the Parish in the face of the Climate Emergency. Taking action to protect and enhance biodiversity in the face of the Ecological Emergency was added in 2020.

We have the following projects to take practical local action:

Education & Awareness - understanding and engagement is a pre-requisite for action. We provide information on sustainable choices, through local news articles, social media and events, and have tackled subjects from food, to clothing, to green investing, electric vehicles, renewable energy and more.

Reduce, reuse, recycle - we have gained accreditation as a Plastic Free Community through the Surfers Against Sewage Scheme. Our successful Waste Not Want Not Facebook group has helped reduce waste and challenge assumptions around buying new.

Green Plan - the objective of the Green Plan is to sequester carbon, and improve and enhance biodiversity through natural climate solutions.

This originally started as tree planting, but has expanded to include initiatives addressing hedgerows, road verges, gardens and other habitats. This is a collaborative project working with Watlington Environment Group and others.

Homes & Energy - housing is the biggest contributor to our carbon footprint in the Parish We are looking to reduce the carbon footprint of both our existing housing stock, and campaign for high standards for new housing developments. Activities have included a thermal imaging project and we are currently working on a feasibility study for a community heating project.


To find out more visit the Watlington Climate Action Group website.

Watch the hedgerow pigment-making workshop below: